from the urls-we-dig-up dept
The flu (aka the influenza virus) can be just annoying to some, but it’s also a deadly threat that can’t be ignored. There’s a new flu vaccine every year, but that’s a hit-or-miss game — with some years being much less effective than others. However, it’s still a good routine to get into — until someone finally develops a universal flu vaccine. If you haven’t gotten your flu shot reminder. Here it is. YMMV.
- Thousands of strains of the flu virus constantly mutate and evolve, making a universal vaccine elusive. Several groups are working on the problem, and progress against multiple strains looks encouraging. It’ll probably take a few more years of animal testing and then clinical trials, but maybe someday, we’ll be able to say goodbye to the flu. [url]
- If you’re one of the people who doesn’t think a flu shot is worth the trouble, maybe some anecdotal evidence will scare you? The common flu can trigger a series of complications such as pneumonia, a collapsed lung, a tracheotomy — and even a leg amputation. [url]
- The effectiveness of the flu shot in 2014 was less than 50%. Perhaps if a flu vaccine could be made more quickly, patients could get flu shots that were actually based on active viruses caught in the wild. It’s also possible to be infected by more than one flu virus at the same time (aka superinfection), but thankfully it doesn’t happen that frequently. [url]
- Anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen are often used to manage flu symptoms, but derivatives of these drugs could also help improve immune responses. NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) can block the production of prostaglandins and blocking specific prostaglandins could significantly improve flu survival rates. [url]
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